with tail between legs


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with one's tail between one's legs

Fig. appearing frightened or cowardly. (Fig. on the image of a frightened or defeated dog going off threatened or humiliated.) John seems to lack courage. When people criticize him unjustly, he just goes away with his tail between his legs and doesn't tell them that they're wrong. The frightened dog ran away with its tail between its legs when the bigger dog growled.
See also: leg, tail

with your tail between your legs

if you leave somewhere with your tail between your legs, you leave feeling ashamed and embarrassed because you have failed or made a mistake
Usage notes: Dogs often put their tail between their legs when someone has spoken angrily to them.
The losing team walked off with their tails between their legs.
See be chasing tail, turn tail
See also: leg, tail

with (one's) tail between (one's) legs

In a state of humiliation or dejection.
See also: leg, tail